The steady Seattle winter rains are arriving and a little preventative drain cleaning can save you from pumping out a flooded basement as the ground becomes saturated. Take the time now to clean out the following drains around your property for a worry-free rainy season.
The city keeps the storm drains clear on the street, but if you have one at the bottom of your driveway, that is your responsibility. Pull any weeds back that are growing up through the grate, rake the leaves, and remove any piles of dirt that prevent water from flowing into the drain. You may need to schedule a more extensive drain cleaning if you can see silt building up below the grate.
A clogged gutter can cause water to pour down on your head by your door or straight down the stem wall into the basement. Use your power washer to remove all those built-up leaves and dirt from your gutters. Make sure that your downspout is still properly attached and that water drains away from your foundation and down towards the street. Adding a screen or gutter helmet can help prevent future buildup inside the downspout itself.
Seattle is full of hills and many homeowners have garages at the bottom of a slope from the street. The drain in front of your garage doors must be working properly to prevent water from flowing straight into your home. After removing leaves and dirt, run your garden hose for 20 minutes and check that the drain is properly directing all the water away from the house. If you notice puddles forming near the foundation, you may want to contact a professional plumber to discuss ways to improve drainage.
If any of your drains are not functioning properly, give Best Plumbing a call to schedule a professional drainage check-up. We serve the greater Seattle area and beyond. Find more great plumbing tips on our Youtube channel!
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High water pressure might seem desirable if you’re taking a shower, but it can actually be a problem if not closely monitored. High water pressure will not only drive up your water bill, but it can also put stress on your pipes and household appliances. That’s why the Best Plumbing team encourages Seattle area homeowners to know the warning signs and call in a professional if necessary.
Pay attention to the water that comes out of your sink and shower. Does the pressure seem particularly strong? Do you hear your pipes banging when you turn on a faucet? These are signs that your water pressure may be too high. One way to tell for sure is to buy a pressure gauge and install it on the faucet near your water meter. If the pressure is measured to be over 80 psi, it may be a hazard.
Too-strong water pressure can cause intermittent leaks in your plumbing system, which may become big problems if left unattended. In addition, varying or high water pressure can put stress on your washing machine, dishwasher, and hot water heater, shortening their lifespan.
If you suspect your water pressure is too high, you should contact a professional to help install a pressure regulator on your main water line. A regulator slows the flow of water to a consistent and reasonable pressure level. This will help lower your water bill, reduce stress on your appliances, and prevent leaks.
The Best Plumbing team is always here to help homeowners in the greater King County area. Whether you need to measure your water pressure or install a regulator, our experts can help you resolve the problem quickly and easily. Just give us a call!
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You need a new boiler. While researching the topic you may have found some discussions about combi boilers. What are they? How are they different from standard boilers? Do you need one? Here’s a quick breakdown of this newer option.
A combi boiler replaces your traditional boiler and hot water heater, allow you to heat your home and enjoy hot water with a single unit. This technology has been popular in homes throughout Europe and the United Kingdom for decades, thanks to its space-saving and efficient performance. Since boilers and water heater tanks only require replacement every twenty or years or so, many U.S. homeowners opt to stick with their traditional setup instead of trying something new. This has slowed the introduction of combi boilers to the U.S. market. However, newer models with improved heating efficiency are making combi boilers a very popular option now.
With combi boilers, your hot water system and your heating system do not share the same water but are heated at the same location. Separate pipes enter the boiler and pass by the burner to be heated, after which they leave the boiler chamber and travels to your taps or baseboard heaters. A heat exchanger is positioned between the central heat and the hot water pipes inside the boiler and stores unused energy. When the thermostat calls for the pumps to start circulating hot water to your baseboards, leftover heat from the hot water side can be used to heat the rest of the home. You can use a combi boiler with gas, oil, or propane as the fuel source.
There are a number of quality combi boiler manufacturers on the market. Here are a few with Energy Star certifications:
If you want to learn about more options to heat your Seattle area home, contact the experts at Best Plumbing. We will work with you to find the best system for your space, your water needs, and your budget. We have been the trusted plumbers for the greater Puget Sound area since 1968!